Notes: This will be a Kurtofsky story. If you don't like that pairing then you probably won't like the fic. You can give it a go if you feel so inclined to do so, but I figured a heads up at the get go would be helpful. I hated Season 4 of Glee so this is my take on how a romantic relationship between Kurt and Dave could play out using the canon up to the finale of season 3. It is AU after that. Updates will be sporadic at best, but the more people read and review the more inclined I feel to speed up the updates so there is that. Also the rating right now is T for language and sexual themes to come, though the rating could go up. Some minor talks of Dave's suicide attempt are mentioned throughout the story so if that could be a trigger for you proceed with mild caution. No beta so all mistakes are mine.
Kurt honestly wasn't sure how his life had come to this.
Waving goodbye to Rachel with a fake smile plastered on his face had been one of the most unpleasant experiences he had dealt with in his life so far. Kurt didn't like unpleasant things.
Everyone stood around the train station as they watched Finn standing off further down the platform where he had chased the train trying to catch a few final glimpses of Rachel riding off toward her future. The irony of it all was most definitely not lost on Kurt. Rachel Berry was being forced to chase her dreams while he wasn't even given a gallon of gas to find his.'The world is just really unfair' Kurt thought to himself as he continued to hold in the scream he so desperately wanted to let out.
A few moments passed and everyone started to feel awkward just standing around the train station. Most of the people who had come to see their loved ones off had already dispersed, but they had just continued to stand there waiting for Finn to return to the group.
"Maybe you should go over there and get him," Sam suggested to Kurt.
"Yeah. I'll go and get him," Kurt replied as he began walking toward his step-brother.
As Kurt approached he got a better view of Finn's stance. His step-brother stood there looking out into the distance at a train that was no longer there with a dejected look and his shoulders slumped in resignation. If Kurt had stopped to think about it, it was actually the perfect embodiment of how he felt.
"Finn. Everyone's waiting around on you. Maybe we could all go to the Lima Bean for coffee?" Kurt suggested as he stood next to the freakishly tall teen.
"Why? Why would we go as a group like that? Rachel isn't here anymore. Half of us are leaving soon anyway. We don't have to keep doing things as the New Directions. We need to just stop this." Finn replied with a hint of anger as he turned away from the train tracks and began heading in the opposite direction back toward his vehicle.
"Contrary to what you apparently believe, we have all grown together as a group over the last three years and everyone is genuinely friends. Besides, I don't think you should be alone right now." Kurt said as he quickly fell into step behind Finn.
At Kurt's last words Finn snapped around and locked his eyes onto Kurt. "I know you may think you know what is best for me and hell, you are probably right. But I just watched the girl I love and had planned on marrying get onto a train headed to New York while I stayed behind. I'm sorry, but I am going to ignore your advice on what you think I need right now." As Finn finished speaking he turned on his heel and made a beeline straight for his vehicle.
Kurt returned to where everyone was standing around with confused looks on their faces.
"Finn just wants to be alone right now," Kurt relayed to the group.
"Do you think he'll be okay?" Mike asked as he watched Finn's vehicle rush off on the road.
Kurt didn't know how to answer the question. "I hope so," he said honestly.
"Maybe we can all go to the Lima Bean for coffee," Blaine suggested excitedly. Kurt nodded his head at his boyfriend and looked to the rest of the group encouragingly until his eyes finally landed on Mercedes.
"Sorry, Boo. I really have to go home and pack. I'm supposed to leave for L.A. tomorrow for the first face to face meeting with my agent. I'll be back in a week though. Maybe we can all go out for coffee as a group then?" she suggested timidly.
"Can't," Quinn spoke up. "Me and my mom are going to New Haven for my new student orientation at Yale in a week and then we are staying up there for a small vacation."
"I'm leaving for California soon. I want to get a good start on my pool cleaning business and precious summer days are ticking away," Puck said from his perch on a nearby bench.
The group stood there awkwardly as they all tried to figure out exactly where to go from there.
"Wow. We really are going our own ways aren't we?" Mike said softly. They were all thinking it, but he was the only one to voice the opinion.
After a few awkward minutes of standing around they all decided to break the silence and say their 'goodbyes'. They all agreed that the 'goodbyes' weren't final. It was just 'goodbye for now'. But that didn't make it hurt any less.
Kurt hung back from the group as they all made their way to their cars.
"My offer for coffee still stands," Blaine said as he noticed Kurt dragging his feet behind the group.
Kurt was grateful. He really did not feel like going home just yet.
The Lima Bean wasn't very busy as Kurt and Blaine made their way inside. The summer heat had apparently chased away even the most faithful of coffee drinkers. The pair was able to walk right up to the counter to place their orders and in no time they had their drinks and a small table off to the side.
The boys sat at the table quietly and albeit awkwardly until finally Blaine broke the silence.
"You seem a little out of it, Kurt. What's wrong?" Blaine asked as he took a sip of his drink.
Kurt sighed as he began to play with the napkin in front of him. "It just feels really weird. We have spent the last three years together and now everyone is leaving and going their own way."
"It happens," Blaine said as he shrugged his shoulders. "I am sure you guys will see each other again soon. Everyone is just growing up and chasing their dreams."
"That's the point Blaine. Everyone is leaving to go after the things they want and I'm not. I am not leaving. I am not chasing anything. I am stuck here and I am the only one."
"That's not true. Santana is staying here too. You aren't the only one who is staying behind in Lima," Blaine offered lamely.
"Yeah, but Santana is staying by choice. She could have left if she wanted to. She got a scholarship to go to school. She is staying behind because she wants to, not because the school didn't want her."
"Look at it this way, Kurt. I'm still here. I have another year at McKinley and we can be together. Meanwhile, you can take general education courses at the community college and take part in some regional productions to add to your acting resume. Then we can both apply to schools in the winter and spring and hopefully the two of us can leave for New York together next year," Blaine said with a smile.
"Wait. So you want me slum around Lima for the next year to work on getting more experience for my application and try again next year? What if I don't get in next year, either?" Kurt asked.
"Well … We can still move to New York together," Blaine offered.
"Okay. So even if I don't get in I could move to New York next year. Why not this year? I can do everything in New York that I could do here."
"Well … I'm here. That seems like a pretty good reason to me."
"So let me get this straight. You want me to put my dream of living in New York on hold for a year so that I can wait around Lima for you to graduate? How is that fair?"
"What do you mean 'fair', Kurt? I figured we could just go to New York together."
Kurt looked down at his hands as they were still playing with his napkin. Anything to look away from his boyfriend. "But I want to go to New York now."
"Don't you think that is a little selfish, Kurt?"
"Excuse me? Selfish? You are the one who wants me to put my dreams on hold for a year."
"Can we please just not talk about this right now?" Blaine asked.
Kurt sighed. The conversation was far from over, but he knew Blaine wouldn't contribute to the discussion anymore that night.
"Do you maybe want to go see a movie tonight? Or we could go to Breadstix?" Blaine asked after he cleared his throat indicating that they were officially changing the subject.
"No. I can't tonight. I'm busy," Kurt replied.
"Busy? With what? School is over."
"Carole bought new curtains and rods for the living room and since my dad is in D.C. I offered my help on installing them tonight so that they wouldn't have to worry about doing it when my dad got home."
"Okay," Blaine said and nodded his acceptance of the offered reason.
It was a lie. But of course Kurt didn't want Blaine to know that.
The couple cleaned up their table and got up to leave. They had actually arrived at the train station in their own separate cars so they quickly kissed and parted in the parking lot of the Lima Bean.
Kurt still wasn't ready to go home. He quietly chastised himself, thinking that he should have accepted Blaine's offer for a date if only to give himself a good excuse to not go home and be alone. He didn't mind being alone, but going home to see the boxes he had packed and the sticky notes he had used to mark all of his belongings that were deemed worthy of the trek to New York was a horribly painful reminder of the fact that the sticky notes would have to be removed and the boxes unpacked. He knew that he could always go to the mall to kill a few hours, but wandering aimlessly through clothes racks and people did not seem too appealing at the moment.
Kurt just wanted to go somewhere quiet. A place that he wouldn't have to worry about running into anyone. Somewhere that he could sit for hours by himself to think and no one would bother him.
He was desperate. And that is when he saw the sign.
Library of Lima.
Kurt always liked to think of himself as somewhat academic and had thought that was the reason why he was recognized by the library staff, but the truth was that over the years the library had become a regular safe haven for the boy. He remembered all the times he would hide out in the library to avoid being tossed in the dumpster during his sophomore year at McKinley. He remembered the horrible week he spent at the library during his junior year trying to find some semblance of quiet solace while he waited to hear any news on his father's condition after his heart attack. And now he was back at the library trying to forget everything the last week had brought with it.
Kurt scanned the shelves in a quiet daze. Usually, he always had school work or something to keep him occupied while he was at the library. He hadn't had time to read for pleasure in a while and now that the school year was over and he had graduated, he didn't even have a summer reading list to work on. He continued to peruse the books and picked up anything that caught his eye, but would quickly return the book to the shelf as his mind continued to dwell on thoughts of his future. It was hard to read about far off places and adventures of fictional characters when your own life was currently missing all promise of those very things.
Just as Kurt rounded the corner of one of the shelves to continue onto the other side he caught a glimpse of someone occupying one of the back tables in the library. They were bent over an array of books that were spread out on the table and mumbling to themselves with determination.
David Karofsky really hadn't changed much since Kurt last saw him in the hospital after the boys attempt at taking his own life. In the back of Kurt's mind, he chastised himself for dropping the friendship he had offered to the boy.
Kurt had tried to keep up with David over Facebook, but a few weeks after David returned home from the hospital the boy must have decided to delete his page. Kurt felt bad for taking so long to notice that the boy's profile was missing from his newsfeed, but in his defense Dave had never really updated that much on the site to begin with.
Since then the two had shared random and terse text messages. Kurt would ask if Dave was doing better and Dave would reply 'Getting there,'. Dave had informed Kurt that he was being home-schooled and Kurt had wished him the best of luck. Kurt had thought about texting David to say that it was weird to be on the stage at prom by himself to coronate the senior royalty, but then decided against it. The last communication the boys had was when Dave had texted Kurt before graduation to say his congratulations and Kurt responded with a simple 'Thank you.'
It was a little appalling, Kurt thought to himself as he stood there and watched David flip through one of the books frantically. He had told David that he would be there for him and help him to accept himself in the face of all the disapproval he was facing from his peers and family, but over the last few months Kurt had been so caught up in his own world and his own troubles to spare the boy anything more than a few moments to type out a quick text message.
Suddenly Kurt had found the perfect distraction.
Kurt gave up searching for a book in favor of approaching the boy who seemed to be lost in his own world of studying.
Kurt had made his way over to the table and thought that David would notice someone approaching, but the studying boy continued to be immersed in his books as Kurt stood on the other side of the table. "David! Hi. We haven't seen each other in while," Kurt stated to the boy.
It was obvious that Dave had no clue that Kurt had approached as he gave a little jump when he realized that someone was standing there talking to him. He looked at Kurt with a confused expression until finally recognition crossed his face and he spoke.
"Kurt? Hey. Um … What are you doing here?" Dave said timidly as he was clearly confused as to why Kurt had approached him.
The two boys were getting dirty looks from the few other people who were occupying the tables for their volume. Kurt gave them all a sheepish smile and sat down at the table across from David before he leaned in a bit to whisper to the other boy, making sure to keep a check on his volume. Luckily, everyone else was far enough away that the two boys were able to converse and go unnoticed as long as they kept their voices down to a whisper. "Sorry to disturb you. I just came by the library to get out of the house and saw you sitting here. We haven't really spoken much lately. I'm sorry for that," Kurt said honestly.
"It's okay. I've been really busy lately anyway," Dave said as he nodded to Kurt in understanding.
"Yeah. You look busy. Exactly what are you studying for in the summer?" Kurt asked as he looked at all the books that were sprawled over the table top.
"The ACT. After my … thing … I uh, well college wasn't really on the check list. I had to get better first and so my dad thought it would be best to put school off for a year until he and my doctor were certain that I was okay. I tried to to argue, but it didn't help me much at first. I guess they both have seen an improvement in the last month because my dad talked to the admissions office at Ohio State and they said that as long as I finish up the school work for my senior year and score well on the ACT that I could start in the fall," Dave said as he gestured to the books around him.
Kurt smiled. He was genuinely proud that Dave had been able to do well even without his help. "That's great. I'm so proud of you. When is your test?"
"June. On the 9th. I still have quite a bit to wait, but I just want to make sure I do well. My dad is still trying to get me to stay home and take my general education courses at the branch here in Lima, but I am hoping that if I do well enough he will let me go to the main campus in Columbus. I don't want to stay another year in Lima if I can help it."
"I know what you mean," Kurt said quietly in response to David's desires.
"And you? I'm sure you are going off to do amazing things next fall."
"Actually, right now I have no clue what my future holds. I was an idiot and only applied to one school up in New York and I didn't get in. It's too late to try and apply anywhere else. So it looks like I am stuck in Lima at least until the end of the year. If I am lucky I might be able to start up somewhere for the semester next spring. If not, then … Maybe next fall," Kurt said as his situation was once again brought to the forefront of his mind.
"Wow. I'm so sorry Kurt. But does that mean you are staying in Lima too or were you still planning on moving up to New York with Berry and Hudson?" Dave asked as he set his pencil down and finally pushed away the book he had been using to study.
"I don't know. Rachel got in to NYADA. She actually just left to go up and look at dorms and apartments with her dads and Finn joined the army. I want to go to New York. I do. But I can't just leave with no plan of action. It is probably too late for me to try and apply to any of the small colleges up there. I just don't know what to do," Kurt said as he studied the lines on the wooden table in front of him.
"What has your dad said about all this?"
Kurt sighed. "We haven't really talked about it. To be honest I haven't really wanted to talk about it. I tried to talk earlier with Blaine and that … just didn't go too well."
"Why? What happened?" Dave asked and then noticing Kurt's hesitance. "Sorry. You don't need to answer that. I am prying. It isn't my business."
"No. It's fine. Blaine thinks this could be good. If I stay, we wouldn't have to worry about a long distance relationship and then next year we could leave for New York together," Kurt replied.
"Okay … So what does Blaine expect you to do around Lima for a year while you wait for him to finish school?"
"I don't know. 'Work on getting more experience.' I just don't see why I have to stay in Lima to get more acting experience. I tried to and I got passed up on the part. Truth be told, I wouldn't fit any part that a small conservative regional theatre group in Lima, Ohio would have in any of their productions." Kurt sighed as he finished his thought.
" … Then go to New York," David said simply.
"Just … Continue to pack up your things and go to New York like you would have if you had gotten into that fancy acting school."
Kurt laughed. "We discussed this already David. What in the world would I do once I got up there? I can't go to school. It isn't a guarantee that I would ever get a part in anything …"
"Just get a job and go for it, Fancy."
"It isn't that simple, David. Besides, I don't even know if I want to do theatre anymore. I absolutely killed my audition and I still didn't get in. I might just not be cut out for it," Kurt said with dejected resignation.
"Then figure out what you want to do and go for it, Kurt. I know you don't want to stay here in Lima so why would you willingly stay any longer than you have to? I don't even really have a choice as to whether I have stay or get to go, but I am doing every damn thing that I can to get out of here. Don't resign yourself to this Kurt. Do what you want," Dave said as he looked Kurt in the eyes with an intensity that was almost palpable.
"You're right," Kurt said simply.
"Of course I'm right. You are Kurt Fucking Hummel. You wore ten inch Lady Gaga heels. You stood up to the big school bully. You absolutely owned the coronation at Junior Prom. You can do anything. So do this," David said with a slightly pained smile on his face. Suddenly all the memories of everything the two boys had been through came rushing to the forefront and demanded all the attention.
David coughed and looked back down at his books, obviously feeling ashamed at bringing up their troubled past so nonchalantly.
"I am so sorry I haven't been there for you, David," Kurt said as he watched the boy on the other side of the table.
"You don't have anything to be sorry for, Kurt. I'm living with the consequences of my decisions and I have to deal with the shit I have caused," Dave said as he continued to look down at the table and fiddled with the edge of one of the books laid out before him.
"No. That is not true. No one should ever have to deal with everything on their own. No one. Especially not you. You have come so far and I am really proud of you, David," Kurt said sincerely as he reached across the table and took the hand that was messing with the book.
"I don't deserve this, Kurt. Your friendship or kindness. I am still a mess. Half of the time I think I am okay with everything, but I still get these complete moments of rage at the fact that I didn't choose any of this yet I still have to deal with it all. It isn't fair," Dave said as he looked to Kurt with desperation in his eyes.
"It isn't fair at all, Dave. But you are wrong. You do deserve my friendship. Actually, you deserve the friendship of someone much better. I haven't been there for you and I should have been. But I hope to make things right, Dave," Kurt said as he continued to hold the other boy's hand. "I will be here for you this summer, okay. We will be here for each other. And we will push each other toward our goals. By the end of the summer you will be moving to Columbus and I will be moving to New York. Deal?"
Dave looked up at Kurt and his gaze held such an intensity that it literally took Kurt's breath away. Kurt had completely stopped breathing as he watched Dave study him from across the table. The one thing that pulled Kurt from his daze was the feeling of his hand being lightly squeezed and Dave's soft voice saying, "Deal."